MIS Brings Paperless Job Tickets to Washington State
Paper job tickets are a thing of the past at the Washington State Department of Printing. Thanks to the in-plant’s new EFI Monarch print production and management solution, the Tumwater, Wash.-based operation now uses digital job tickets. This not only saves time and printing costs, it is expected to reduce spoilage and rework over time.
“Orders and change requests are entered into the system,” explains Rand Daley, project manager. “Since ticket changes are reflected one place in the system, via the digital ticket, a press operator can have confidence they are looking at the latest version of the ticket when they look at the ticket online.”
The elimination of paper job tickets, along with the daily printed factory schedule, is saving the in-plant more than $2,000 a month in internal printing costs.
In search of a more flexible management information system (MIS), the in-plant went through a four-month RFP process before selecting the Monarch software. It was launched in February. One requirement was support for the Microsoft SQL Server database platform, the state standard.
“EFI’s support for SQL Server was in beta status, and we were the first customer,” says Daley. “It took considerable adjusting and close work with EFI to stabilize production operations. This was a slightly risky endeavor but we were successful in the first phase of the project.”
Monarch’s PrintFlow scheduling tool has created a more efficient scheduling workflow by reducing idle time and bottlenecks. Jobs with similar properties are grouped together to reduce switchover time. PrintFlow automatically locates the optimal job path based on available equipment, current workload and the status of other job delivery schedules. Each time a proposed change is submitted it provides a new scenario with an impact analysis to see how jobs and customers are affected.
Bob has served as editor of In-plant Impressions since October of 1994. Prior to that he served for three years as managing editor of Printing Impressions, a commercial printing publication. Mr. Neubauer is very active in the U.S. in-plant industry. He attends all the major in-plant conferences and has visited nearly 170 in-plant operations around the world. He has given presentations to numerous in-plant groups in the U.S., Canada and Australia, including the Association of College and University Printers and the In-plant Printing and Mailing Association. He also coordinates the annual In-Print contest, cosponsored by IPMA and In-plant Impressions.